Fossgate Books: The York retailer that was attracting well-known prospects to shut

A MUCH-BELOVED vintage and second-hand bookshop in York is to shut subsequent month when its proprietor retires after 30 years within the enterprise.

Alan Bennett, Jools Holland, Timothy Spall, Melvyn Bragg and Andrew Marr are among the many prospects who’ve frequented Fossgate Books in Fossgate over time, says proprietor Alex Hesltrip.

He mentioned the shop can be closing its doorways for the final time on New 12 months’s Eve and want to thank all previous and current prospects for supporting the enterprise.

“It is a deliberate retirement after greater than 30 years as a bookseller right here in York,” he mentioned.

“Sooner or later I’ll proceed to be energetic in promoting books, particularly on-line. This will likely be a brand new journey for me, so it would take a while to rise up and operating.”

Alex mentioned he began promoting books in York within the early 90s at a bookshop referred to as Micklegate Rectangular Books.

Nonetheless, after about seven years he moved throughout town heart to Fossgate, the place he ran his personal enterprise for a few years alongside Jack Duncan Books. Jack then retired and the store was renamed Fossgate Books.

He mentioned his clientele included many guests to town and York’s regular stream of vacationers made such outlets fairly viable.

Snooker gamers taking part in within the UK championships on the York Barbican typically additionally paid a go to throughout breaks, and the store featured within the BBC’s protection of Sunday’s last.

He mentioned town’s many bookshops have been a city-specific attraction for some, however a few of the individuals who run them, now of their 60s like him and seeking to retire, closed Ken Spelman Books in Micklegate earlier this yr.

He mentioned what occurred subsequent can be as much as the homeowners of the Fossgate Books constructing, but when anybody was keen on operating a bookshop anyplace in York, they’d be greater than welcome to get in contact for a chat.

Tributes to Fossgate Books on Fb embody: “Finest bookshop ever. Coolest bookshop you have been to? Mine is palms down.”

One other buyer mentioned: “I discovered Fossgate Books on Instagram as folks have been extremely recommending this store. And it did not disappoint. The proprietor was beautiful and really useful and beneficial some books for my thesis.”

One other mentioned: “I will be sorry to see the shop closed if you cannot move it on to a different patron.” Terry Pratchett recommended that it was an institution described as “L-space”, a mystical dimension connecting all libraries, containing all of the books that ever have been or ever will likely be.

In 2020 The Final Information to Bookshops in York mentioned: “Fossgate Books is absolutely stocked with second-hand and classic books in a wide range of genres from classics to historical past and youngsters’s books.”

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